Friday, December 4, 2009

Why Tiger Woods Is Not Happy

We, like everyone else, have been inundated with news about Tiger Woods' "transgressions" in recent days. But one area curiously unexplored is the question of why Woods, with a life envied by the vast majority of people, is apparently unhappy. And not just now that his affairs have been found out--no, one must assume that the reason he embarked on the affairs in the first place (and kept them hidden from his wife) was also unhappiness of some sort.

Let us be clear. We are in no way passing judgment on Tiger or his activities. Quite frankly, we couldn't care less about his (or anyone else's) sexual practices, and don't view this as making him less "likable," or somehow a lesser person than he was before. To us such discussions are wholly irrelevant, like ripples on the ocean.

What we do think is interesting (as we have discussed in the past) is that few people seem to realize the paradoxical message in all of this. Namely, while some huge proportion of individuals think it would be wonderful to be Tiger Woods, Tiger himself is not happy.

Of course, most people don't think of it like that. They think something along the lines of: "I would appreciate everything he has--I wouldn't throw it all away for some cocktail waitress." (Or perhaps: "I just wouldn't have gotten married!") And it is easy to say such things when one is not, in fact, Tiger Woods. But given that Tiger himself seems not to be happy, perhaps we should ask why that is, and what it says about the human condition.

Our thesis is this: Tiger is not happy because he (like most people) has invested his potential happiness in things, events, and relationships. The fact that his goals may differ from yours (winning the Masters versus getting promoted) is irrelevant. The point is that when you "outsource" your happiness to externalities you cede control over it, destined to be continually disappointed when things do not turn out as planned.

The uplifting corollary to this, however, is that any of us can be happy at any time, regardless of wealth, status, power, relationships, etc. Tiger Woods could be happy, too, but not so long as he continues to chase the brass ring of achievement. Whatever happiness he does find will be (by definition) temporary and fleeting, as he accomplishes one extreme goal and moves on to the next, always finding himself curiously unfulfilled by what seemed, at the time, to be the answer he was seeking.

Indeed, we are reminded of the experience of David Duval, who quit golf shortly after winning the 2001 British Open, and a few years later had this to say about why winning proved a tremendous letdown":

"I think I figured it would mean personal validation as opposed to professional validation. You know, look at me: I'm OK. I'm a good guy, not just a good golfer. So in that respect, it was not the end-all, be-all that I made it out to be in my head."

We are all, of course, seeking this "personal validation," but the secret is that the answer is not to win golf tournaments, or be a titan of industry, or even to be a good husband and father. Only when we cease looking elsewhere to satisfy our eternal yearning for meaning, when we discover that the key to our happiness lies, shiny and unused, in our own hand, only then will we discover the blissful and liberating experience of embracing the abyss.


  1. This a great argument against envy and jealousy. It doesn't even have to be Tiger Woods. I've often met people, and even myself included, who look to the person directly next to us and feel that we would be more appreciative of our lives if we could just share in the accomplishments that the other person has.

    But the idea that laying claim to achievements can bring someone happiness is quite delusional. I believe that achievements are just subtle addictions that occur in life. One achievement feels good and we are driven to achieve more. By some chance we get that second one and before we know it we are selling our souls in the business world or in the political arena for achievements and recognition. Sounds very much like hard-core drugs to me. What is the difference between the two? They both impede our spiritual development, if there is such a thing.

    Moreover, should this negative perception of achievements then halt us from dreaming or striving for a greater good? is this the path to becoming absurd? or just deconstructive thinking?

  2. The real reason Tiger's unhappy? Hmm, I thought it's because he can't have Federer . . .

    Just joshin', gents. Seneca and the Stoics are giving you ringing endorsements on this post. I've read all your posts with much interest, and this one, I suggest, is one of your finest.

    On a side--but related--note, as folks cry out more and more "give us jobs, give us jobs" in this economic climate, I think--employing an absurdist perspective--that folks' concerns are only partially about paying bills and eating. Because we live in a culture that conflates being with doing, too many folks seeking work feel, more importantly, deprived of *meaning* in their lives. Just as Tiger placed too much faith in externalities, I hope/trust that this economic crisis will encourage many to recognize that the potential for enlightenment rests within.

    Live simply; question all master narratives that dictate what "happiness" and "success" really mean. As my inspiration Diogenes proclaimed, "True freedom is the minimum of needs." And those needs go beyond basic sustenance issues, for they encompass things like the endorsement and approval of others.

    It's simply a matter of waking up to the possibilities. Of course, a project of a lifetime . . .

    Keep up the great work--

    Brian :)

  3. Great post Rick! Along with Brian, I also thought of the Stoics after reading this post, which I attributed to my recent completion of the book "A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy." I recommend it if you're not already familiar with Stoicism - one of the early absurdist philosophies.

  4. Tiger Woods is unhappy because he beds lots of women?!?! That seems to be a decidedly anti-absurdist assumption.

    You seem to be implying that if you are not in a monogamous marriage that it MUST BE because you are unhappy? I am not sure how you came to make that assumption, it flies it the face of most of the musings of this blog.

    Tiger Woods may be entirely happy, in both his marriage, and in his paramouric proclivities. It may be your natural anti-absurdist prejudices raising its ugly head to interpret his wonder lust, or lustful wondering, as it were, and his reactions to the intense media scrutiny as a sign of unhappiness.

    I am not saying Tiger is happy, what I am just saying is that in my opinion there is absolutely no basis for you to make the assumption that he is unhappy, based on what has been revealed to date.

  5. Anonymous-

    We are saying no such thing. We actually think it is pretty clear Tiger is unhappy - content individuals generally do not drive their cars into trees while being chased by their golf-club-wielding spouses, nor do they leave voice-mail messages asking lovers to modify their phone because "my wife may be calling you."

    We are not saying Tiger is unhappy because of his affairs - what we are saying is that his actions seem to be those of someone in search of happiness rather than one who has already found it. Think of it this way - Tiger apparently wants to stay with his wife, and yet he had affairs knowing full well the damage to his relationship that could ensue. Why else would he do that were he not in search of something? (In short, these actions are not consistent with happiness - the content individual would either get married and be faithful, or not get married...)

    Put simply - either Tiger is flat-out lying about wanting to stay with his wife (seems unlikely - why bother?), he is "playing the role" of someone who wants to stay with his wife (even more unlikely), or he has willfully damaged a relationship he views as important to his happiness because he was not happy to begin with.


  6. Hmm, still seems like quite an assumption. Happy people do run into trees and fire hydrants IF they are being chased by unhappy spouses with golf clubs.

    You say that it is pretty clear that he is searching for happiness because content individuals get married and be faithful or don’t get married. Where does this come from? This clearly comes from the programmed ‘norms’ of society. Marriage has various advantages, variety is not one of those. Who says you can’t be content with both the advantages of marriage and a variety of partners, if your situation allows it? To confine oneself to only the one, when your content-ness dictates both, is clearly limiting yourself to the societal defined ‘role’ of faithful spouse. Something you seem to be buying into, which I noted is anti-absurd.

  7. Well, perhaps we are not stating our position clearly enough. You are certainly correct that one could be absurd, be married, and have affairs. But would such an individual keep his affairs secret? Would he, if they were found out, make a big deal about trying to "save" his marriage? We think not.

    Let us put it this way - Tiger got married because (we assume) he wanted to have a family (because he thought it would make him happy). But he also wanted the variety not available in marriage. There is a conflict here - not because one cannot have affairs and be content, but because (by Tiger's own admission) he wants to stay with his wife, who does not want him to have affairs. So you are correct that one can have the advantages of both being married and not being married "if your situation allows it" - but clearly his did not!

    Also, we are confused by your reference to one's contendness "dictating" something - to us, this is the definition of anti-absurd. The absurd man does not need some certain set of circumstances to be content - he accepts what comes with equanimity, rather than wishing for things to be different. One whose happiness depends on having affairs (or being faithfully married, for that matter) will never be truly content.

  8. Random Havoc -previously posting as AnonymousDecember 7, 2009 at 2:35 PM

    You ask would someone keep secret his affairs, or make a big deal of ‘saving’ his marriage if found out, well, he may if he perceives that is the optimal way to maintain his desired arrangement.

    There are many reasons he may do so, not least among those are the monetary considerations, endorsement concerns and the like, but that does not necessarily imply unhappiness.

    This is where you are making your grand assumptions. You believe he is investing such effort because he is SEARCHING for happiness, and he may well be, but there is no evidence to believe this over any other scenario that could be as equally valid, except preconceived notions of what a ‘happily contented’ person would do (i.e. be married and be faithful, or not be married).

    There likely is much conflict between Tiger’s desires and other’s expectations, there always is, no matter how simpatico the relationship, but again, it is merely blatant assumption based on ant-absurd conjecture to conclude therefore there is unhappiness as root cause.

    As to the reference to contentedness dictating actions, are you equally confused by hunger dictating that we eat, or feelings of cold dictating that we find warmth for our comfort contentment? To me, denying that our desires dictate action seems antithetical to absurd life, or life itself for that matter. Sure we accept situations with equanimity and scoff at its ultimate purposelessness, but that does not mean that we should not seek warmth when cold or food when hunger or variety of companionship despite social expectations, if that is what one’s contentment dictates. There ARE reasons one may forgo some of these dictated actions, but embracing the absurd is not one of them.

  9. Well, it seems we are speaking different languages here - you talk of "desired arrangements" and "monetary considerations" as if these are legitimate sources of happiness, and to us they are not. One who relies on such external things to be happy, as we have argued numerous times, will eventually be disappointed when these "desired arrangements" fail to come to pass. To us, the notion that one's contentedness can be "dictated" by anything is antithetical to the entire premise of the absurd. (This is why Buddhism defines Nirvana as the extinguishment of desire.)

    True happiness comes not from things, or relationships, or achievements, but rather from recognition and acceptance that the world is meaningless. We fail to see how someone who accepts this premise could have any sort of desired arrangement, let alone one that relied on endorsement income as a prerequisite for happiness!

  10. Non est mea culpa, I don’t believe these things, are ‘sources’ of happiness, neither their mere pursuit. However, I also do not believe that merely being an existent condition is indicative of unhappiness, as you seem to do by your assumption of Tiger’s ‘obvious unhappiness’.

    But, I do not possibly see how contentedness would come from mere recognition and acceptance of meaninglessness, this has been root cause for much consternation since the advent of modernity. Recognition and acceptance of meaninglessness only sets the stage, taking away the former odium for the individual’s contentment from the outward, the other worldly, and placing squarely back onto the individual. This, it seems, is where I differ from you in my understanding of the absurd (well, one a few differences, really).

    To illustrate with an analogous situation, when a child comes to the recognition and acceptance that their material needs will not forever be fulfilled by their parent’s efforts, the mere recognition and acceptance of the fact will not content the child’s future need for food shelter. He must take it upon himself to content his material desires.

    For me it is the same when a person comes to recognize and accept that there is no way for him to know if there is objective meaning, or not, and that, for all intents and purposes, the universe is objectively meaningless and without purpose. By this he should realizes that his ‘meaning/purpose contentment’ will no longer to be provided by an objective, other worldly ‘fatherly’ source. However this should no more content his innate desires for meaning and purpose, any more then the innate material needs of the child were contented previously. But rather, it should merely inform him that he is responsible for his own contentment for his own subjective meaning/purpose fulfillment, and that he will go hungry for lack, as would the child, if he does not fulfill his own needs.
    So we come full circle back to ‘these things I talk of’, these things are not what is dictating happiness, the thing that is doing the dictating are a person’s innate needs, and to deny them is to deny your humanity, these other things are merely tools. They merely assist in the fulfillment of one’s innate needs. They, when in attendance, are neither indicators of a person’s happiness nor his unhappiness.

    To say that a person should not rely on them is like saying a person should not rely on a gun to hunt for food, or an axe and saw to build a house (or the modern day equivalent, the job and free exchange of services including Tiger’s endorsement income), it is like saying that the mere recognition and acceptance that there is no ‘outward’ source of material needs fulfillment, other than yourself, should be all that is necessary to fulfill one’s material needs, after all guns and axes break and you will ultimately be hunger and homeless. When in fact, a gun, axe and saw help tremendously, even if only for the nonce.

    Happiness is independent of these tools, it’s true, but that independence also means that even if the tools are present, it doesn’t necessarily follow that happiness is not. The reason I responded to you today was because in your posting about Tiger you attributed unhappiness to his actions, I saw no reason to make such an attribution, except, as I previously stated, the very anti-absurd biased idea of how a happy and contented person ‘should’ act.

    1. I'm glad you referenced humanity. For me absurdism is valid but we must also consider the fact that we are animals and have natural needs and desires that affect our mental state.

  11. It's certainly possible that Tiger Woods had affairs because he was unhappy. But what if Tiger Woods had affairs because he was living his life as an absurd man! An absurd man has the capacity to enjoy, and it sounds like Tiger Woods was doing a lot of enjoying!

    This post seems incongruent with the theme of the blog. Imagine Tiger Woods on a golf trip, solo, in his hotel room when a beautiful woman knocks on his door and wants to sleep with him. I can easily see him happily married AND happily sleeping with the woman, especially as an absurd man.

    Furthermore, imagine if on the flight home Tiger took the time to read this blog in its entirety. Isn’t it possible or even likely that he’d feel BETTER after reading it and be MORE likely to continue his extramarital affairs?

    Tiger unlocked those self-imposed chains, but unfortunately for him and his wife he got caught. But that’s okay; I’ve got the solution to their dilemma. Just read this blog and become the Absurd Couple. I have no doubt that it would help.

    Please keep up the good work (In spite of this one perplexing post, I really enjoy this blog).

  12. Well, I suppose we could argue that Tiger Woods is really having a blast throughout all of this (his crash and subsequent apology to his wife and family could just be enjoyable roles he has chosen to happily experiment with), but I think Rick's post is using the circumstancial evidence presented in the media as proof that he's not. It's an assumption, true, but a highly educated one.

  13. Modern Man,

    Neither I, nor Rick, were talking about the SUBSEQUENT behavior and/or happiness of Tiger Woods. No rational individual would be happy or content with the media circus that resulted from his private dispute spilling into public view. Although more than a few, finding themselves in his situation, might be bemused by the absurdity of their current situation. No, we were talking about Tiger's actions preceding the accident.

    This is supported by Rick's own words when I made claimed that he might be making anti-absurd assumptions, and he responded with:

    "In short, these actions are not consistent with happiness - the content individual would either get married and be faithful, or not get married..."

    This, it seems clear to me, was not an educated assumption, this was merely conjecture, most likely based on the social meme that 'money doesn't buy happiness', as well as the societal ingrained idea and ideals of marriage, and how a 'happy and contented' spouse should behave.

    I might add that Rick's pre-prejudice against Tiger's brand of 'success', vis-a-vis his particular take on the absurd, evidenced on this very blog, likely played a huge role in his assumptions.

    In short, there was absolutely no evidence that Tiger Woods was driven to his 'transgressions' by unhappiness, none what so ever. It is only by projecting onto Tiger preconceived social expectations of marriage and fidelity, with a good dose of anti-absurd motivations, that one could assume some OBVIOUS unhappiness.

  14. Random Havoc,

    This was the excerpt from one of Rick's responses that inspired my post:

    "We actually think it is pretty clear Tiger is unhappy - content individuals generally do not drive their cars into trees while being chased by their golf-club-wielding spouses, nor do they leave voice-mail messages asking lovers to modify their phone because "'my wife may be calling you.'"

    Like I said, he might have genuinely enjoyed the role of the "paranoid husband" and, later, "apologetic husband," but I'd make the educated guess that he didn't.

    Regarding the core argument that you refer to, I think the key to understanding Rick's 'conjectures' lies in trying to understand the happiness of the absurd. When one is struck with the absolute meaningless of it all, and its resultant contentment, one isn't driven to cheat on one's spouse. It's a preventable harmful action, and doing malicious harm to others has no place within the absurd.

    Within this context, Rick's comment, "the content individual would either get married and be faithful, or not get married..." makes a lot more sense.

  15. Modern Man,

    I am somewhat bemused that it was Rick's non sequitur that prompted you to post. As I said to Rick when he originally made that remark;

    "Happy people (may) run into trees and fire hydrants IF they are being chased by unhappy spouses with golf clubs."

    For the sake clarity for all, allow me to be elementary and show why I believe Rick's original statement to be a non sequitur. A logical non sequitur is an argument in which its conclusion does not follow from its premises, thus;

    Men are humans
    Mary is a human
    Therefore, Mary is a man

    Unhappy people run into trees chased by their wife
    Tiger ran into a tree chased by his wife
    Therefore, Tiger is unhappy

    Clearly there could be other reasons Tiger ran into the tree, and therefore his fundamental unhappiness is not evidenced by this mere fact, thus a non sequitur.

    I do tend to agree with your 'educated guess' that subsequently he was probably unhappy and uncontented. Who wouldn't be?

    As to the core argument, I believe you are right when you say the key to understanding Rick's conjectures was understanding how Rick interprets the happiness of the absurd, which I alluded to in my last post. But, I would contend that that is only part of the key, the other parts being, as I said, the meme of 'riches' and the programmed attitude towards marriage, both anti-absurd notions. Which puts us squarly back to the start, there was absoulutly no evidence of Tiger's unhappiness, merely anti-absurd conjecture.

    However, I am somewhat puzzled that you would proclaim cheating on a spouse to be doing 'malicious harm.' From what I gathered from this blog (and believe me I have read every entry thoroughly, as this is a topic of interest for me and I enjoy reading other's view on the subject), wouldn't the absurd man greet every situation with equanimity. Wouldn't it be equally true that embracing the absurd would not drive one not to cheat as well?

    From what I gather from Rick's posting that would mean that if the situation came about where he was faithful the absurd man would greet it with equanimity and not wish for things to be different, but likewise if the situation arose where he was unfaithful he would greet this with equanimity as well, and enjoy it for what it is, meaningless, but with its temporary attendant pleasures, and not wish it to be different.

    In fact, Rick has an entire blog entry describing just how utterly unimportant faithfulness is, describing, because of the fundamental meaningless of it all, how unimportant it is. How can something with absolutely no meaning be malicious in the first place?

    What exactly are you being malicious to, an illusion? So an illusionary self is being meaninglessly malicious to an other illusionary self? This makes absolutely no sense in the context of the absurd as is described throughout this blog.

  16. Random Havoc,

    You make some good points, and I do realize the paradox of my argument (it's the same one I face when claiming that an absurd man doesn't go out and kill people, although it is absolutely meaningless either way). Perhaps Tiger Woods did approach all the sexually available women with equanimity and was absolutely happy in seeing the meaninglessness of it all. But why would he have gotten married in the first place, making meaningless vows to a woman that is clearly anti-absurd (and considers her illusionary self to be real)? Not only that but he kept it secret from her, which just doesn't seem consistent with the equanimity of the absurd.

    I agree with Rick that faithfulness is meaningless, and Tiger's actions have no meaning. I'm not arguing that. But Tiger Wood's unfaithfulness seems to be of the anti-absurd, anti-happy sort (for the reasons mentioned above).

    I'd argue that being knowingly malicious requires some sort of anti-absurdity. And what is knowingly malicious if not cheating on a wife who expected the promises of a marriage to be realized? An absurd man wouldn't have married in the first place if he knew he was a man on the prowl.

  17. We apologize for not replying sooner, but were traveling yesterday. Let us first say that it has been very interesting to read through this debate, as many of the issues raised here are ones we often struggle with as well.

    From our perspective, it seems we are all on basically the same page - we all agree Tiger Woods is likely not content, although Random Havoc is correct that we made an assumption about this in our original post. But we should stress that this assumption was driven not by any preconceived notions about what the absurd life "should" look like, but rather (as Modern Man has said) by our armchair analysis of Tiger's reactions to recent events. Thus, our assumption that Tiger was not happy prior to last week was not based on his being rich, famous, or promiscuous (none of those are incompatible with the absurd), but rather on his actions in recent days, which led us to believe he had been anti-absurd the whole time. So yes, an assumption, but for slightly different reasons than those suggested by Random Havoc. (And in re-reading our post, we see it was a bit ambiguous; thus, we thank Random Havoc for calling us on it...)

    One final note - we wish to address this issue of circumstances leading to happiness. Random Havoc seems to be suggesting Tiger could have been content prior to his affairs being found out, then not content afterward. But to us this is inconsistent with true happiness, which does not depend on circumstances, but rather comes from within. Thus, were Tiger truly happy, being found out as a philanderer would have zero impact, since it would simply imply a new set of circumstances, neither better nor worse than his prior life.

    That was the impetus behind our comment that cheating on a spouse was not consistent with the absurd - we are not interested in whether it is "morally wrong" to do so, but rather that this pattern of behavior, coupled with Tiger's reaction to recent events, paints a picture of someone who is not happy.

  18. Well put, Random Havoc. I'd like to add a few specific quotes from this site:

    "Would we be upset if our wife had an affair? Perhaps. We would like to think not. But even if we were, we would recognize the absurdity of our reaction, and laugh at what ridiculous creatures we are." and:

    "Consider the original example, that of one's wife having an affair. We recognize that for most people it is jarring to hear us assert such an event does not matter, but ask yourself why. The answer, for those who choose to find it, is that jealousy (along with other human emotions) is nothing more than a biologically advantageous strategy passed down from our ancestors. Thus, men who were more successful at keeping their wives from mating from other men tended to pass down more genes than those who were less successful. It really is that simple, as Richard Dawkins revealed in his groundbreaking work The Selfish Gene. turns out the reason I am jealous if my wife has an affair (and let's be honest - most people would be) is simple biology and evolution."

    And there are many more. My view is that it was anti-absurd for Tiger to get married in the first place. It appears he would have preferred to sleep with many women while choosing one of the women to have babies with and like a little more and spend more time with. But because of societal reasons he got married.

    Then once married, he realized that he would be unhappy to be "faithful". Many others are happy to be "faithful", but Tiger isn't made that way. So he made the absurd and correct decision (according to his makeup) to do what he wanted to do. And remember, what he did was between consenting adults and did not even break the law.

    Of course, had he known all that would happen if he was caught, he might have made a different decision. Or at least he probably would have been much more careful. But imagining an absurd man worrying about the future and therefore not living the life he wants to live in the present strikes me as a ridiculous.

    Yes, his wife had her feelings hurt and was humiliated, which is unfortunate. But "malicious harm"? The main reason she's so hurt is because of societal (and anti-absurd) ideas like "marriage", "fidelity", "commitment", etc., as so eloquently described on this very blog.

    It appears to me to be a slam-dunk case that Tiger made an absurdist decision to live his life how he wanted (after finding himself married with a dilemma). The more interesting question for me is how would an absurd man react to the situation Tiger is in now? Imagine the possibilities. One scenario I see is him quickly apologizing for any "harm" done to his wife and then moving on to truly enjoying his life and looking almost unfazed by the incident. His popularity would surely plummet even more than it has now, but does an absurd man worry about "popularity"?

    Another scenario I see is him using the media attention he's getting to travel around the country playing golf and giving long lectures about absurdism and how his first mistake was getting married in the first place, and how everybody should live life like he does and embrace the abyss. Of course he would never do that since he would become hated and ridiculed (even more) and his life would probably be endangered by religious fanatics, but it's fun to think about what if.

    So sad that most of society would frown on this blog, at least current society. 10,000 years or so from now it might be a different story.

  19. Anonymous-

    Ha! Thanks for this - the concept of Tiger giving lectures about absurdism is truly a wonderful image...


  20. Modern Man,

    Perhaps, when Tiger got married, he was not ‘on the prowl’.’ I suspect he may have come to it later, but who really knows. But that is not really the point. It was not my intention to argue that Tiger is an absurd man. Only that it was merely anti-absurd conjecture to conclude that unhappiness was the root cause of Tigers transgressions.

    After all, even Camus, in The Myth of Sisyphus, starts out by presenting examples of the absurd life. He begins with Don Juan, the serial seducer who lives the passionate life to the fullest. Would anyone argue that Don Juan was ‘obviously unhappy’ simply because he, like Tiger, bedded many women, Camus certainly didn’t.

    The only thing that Rick based his conjecture on was Tigers transgressions. It takes anti-absurd assumptions to come to the conclusion that the root cause for these transgressions was Tiger’s fundamental unhappiness. This fits nicely into the cultural meme that ‘Money can’t buy happiness’ and the socially programmed notions of how a happy, contented married man ought to behave, as well as the preconceived bias of the happiness achieved in the way Rick interprets the absurd.

    It seems to me that by making these assumptions about Tiger, simply because he is rich and he beds many women, that you intrinsically insinuate that rich men can’t embrace the absurd, or that the absurd man can’t be rich, because ‘obviously’ if you are rich you are chasing ephemeral goals, trying to resolve some fundamental unhappiness. None of that is necessarily true.

    (edit note - I composed this before I read Rick's latest response, so take it with a grain of salt if you believe he already addressed some of these points)

  21. Random Havoc,

    I think Rick's response clarifies the situation. I agree with your claim that there is indeed a popular (and anti-absurd) cultural meme that is against extra-marital sex, wealth, and worldly achievements, but I also agree with Rick that Tiger's recent actions align with unhappiness. This might be a faulty judgement call based on the information presented by the media, but I don't see any contradiction between the two.

    Either way, it's been fun debating!

  22. Great article. I think Tiger is deeply unhappy or something, as well. Might have unrealistic expectations of others as well as himself - overcompetitive and not reflective enough. He doesn't seem to have space or time to self-reflect because he keeps making the same mistakes.